I didn't grow up in a church that regularly sang hymns. Our church was founded in the 1980s and was a mobile church for several years. Most of the worship songs were considered modern. Until we moved to Oklahoma, I was not aware of "The Old Rugged Cross" and "It Is Well with My Soul". I was only vaguely familiar with "In the Garden" because my mother is a big fan of Elvis Presley. What I do remember are the children songs that were taught in Sunday School. I know that Jesus loves me AND the other little children, and that Father Abraham had many sons (and daughters) who moved their limbs to praise the Lord. I also learned that I could not get to Heaven on roller skates, even though they were my favorite mode of transportation!
I did, however, know "Amazing Grace". I had watched people sing it on all sorts of television shows and movies. We probably sang it several times during church services, and even at school for a choir concert. I really did not pay much attention to the words until I started walking with Christ again. Now, when I hear a heartfelt verse, it often brings tears to my eyes. Now, I love when this song is included in a church service, sung with or without music.
Amazing Grace! How sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me!
I once was lost, but now am found
Was blind, but now I see.
I am not perfect. I sin everyday. I must be forgiven everyday for my transgressions. No matter what, though, I know that I have a Savior that forgives me. All of the rotten things I do and say can still be forgiven. I can change, but not on my own. I need the Holy Spirit to be with me and to guide me. Jesus is my savior. I cannot save myself! No one can. Following The Way (Jesus) is the only thing I should do.
When we've been there ten thousand years
Bright shining as the sun,
We've no less days to sing God's praise
Than when we'd first begun.
There may be dark days now. There will be dark days ahead. But, we are promised an eternity with our Creator! I will sing now and forever. I will rejoice while living in this world, and in Heaven. I just have to be reminded sometimes that I should be rejoicing in my Lord, and not dwelling in my misery. Take God's gift of grace, and change your ways because of Him! Learn the Scriptures, and learn some Good songs too.
Colossians 3:16 English Standard Version (ESV)
16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.
Here is a link to one of my current favorite songs, sung by Zach Williams at Harding Prison in Tennessee.